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The Power User 

I love computers. They�ve brought efficiency and connectivity to my life.

Certain tasks that used to take me hours can now be done in minutes. For example, a 12-page media plan in need of a  minor revision doesn�t have to be completely

Mark S. Levit

retyped. I can find phone numbers in nanoseconds, get correspondence out in minutes, I can fire off an email in seconds and I can see my entire day�s schedule at a glance. Wow! That�s progress.

I love to learn new applications with hopes of saving time and increasing my efficiency. My machine�s full of software I�ve sampled and abandoned in the quest for productivity. Thousands of dollars worth of software!

Ten years ago my secretary did all my typing. Now I do my own word processing. Thoughts go directly from my brain to my hard drive. They used to travel from my brain to a yellow pad to my outbox to my secretary�s desk to her eyes to her fingers to her typewriter to a piece of plain white bond�then into my inbox. She was never happy when I wanted to make an itty-bitty change. 

I�ve learned a lot about the care and feeding of computers, too. That means every time there�s a problem with someone else�s machine, I�m the first to be summoned for help. A little knowledge can be dangerous to an aspiring geek�s carefully planned schedule.  I�m forever pulled away from my rounds for defragging, restoring short cuts, downloading drivers and reconnecting printers. I�m giving others the gift of efficiency.

I treat my machine better than I did my first convertible. I figure if I take care of my computer it�ll take care of me. So I regularly delete unneeded document files, uninstall unused programs, clear cache, optimize, update applications and so forth.

I don�t mind the effort, though. My computer has turned me into Efficiency Man!

I wondered how much time I�d saved working with a computer rather than my old conventional typewriter, notepad, calendar and phone.  I kept a log over the course of a week to amaze myself with how much time I saved. Here�s what it looked like:  

Needless to say, I was not amazed. Dumbfounded is more like it. In my journey for peak efficiency I�ve been captured and made to serve as a slave to my computer. If life is cruel, technology�s more so.

At least I�ve got a Pentium 3 with 512 megs of RAM operating at 750Mhz. With my old 386 I�d probably be responding to my morning email at mid-afternoon. 

Tell me about how computers have simplified � or complicated � your life.  Call me, Mark Levit, at 212.696.1200.

    Task                 New Weekly Time Allocation       Old Weekly    
                                                                     Time Allocation

1. Boot machine             25 minutes                       0 minutes

2. Read early
     morning email           50 minutes                      0 minutes

3. Respond to early
     morning email           60 minutes                      0 minutes

4. Review daily
     calendar                  25 minutes                       5 minutes

5. Review daily
     call list                    25 minutes                      0 minutes

6. Clean spam filter      100 minutes                      0 minutes

7. Read and respond
     to late morning
     email                       50 minutes                      0 minutes

8. Word process
   correspondence         150 minutes                       0 minutes

9. Download patch for
   Microsoft Windows      10 minutes                      0 minutes

10. Read and respond
     to early afternoon
     email                      50 minutes                       0 minutes

11. Arrange program
     menu icons
     in alphabetical order  15 minutes                       0 minutes

12. Read and respond
     to late afternoon
     email                      50 minutes                       0 minutes

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